Graphene Nanopores and Nanodevices for Single-Molecule Sensing

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Monday, April 18, 1065 Kemper Hall, 11:00am-12:00pm

Speaker: Slaven Garaj
Research Associate, Harvard Nanopore Group
Department of Physics, Harvard University

Host: Professor Richard Kiehl

Abstract:

Nanopore-based devices are versatile platform for single-molecule detection and analysis, and hold promise for ultrafast, inexpensive DNA sequencing. A DNA molecule, electrophoretically driven through a nano-scale pore, is highly confined and linearized within the nanopore constriction, allowing for separate parts of the DNA molecule to be interrogated in succession. In this talk, I will present several classes of nanopore-based biomolecular sensors we have developed recently. In particular, I will focus on nanopores fabricated in atomically-thin graphene membranes, which were used to detected conformation of individual DNA molecules. Graphene?s effective thickness in water was measured to be less then one nanometer, indicating ? in collusion with theoretical modeling ? that the graphene nanopore is intrinsically capable of discerning between sub-nanometer features along the DNA molecule. Excellent electrical conductivity of the graphene opens up a possibility to use graphene nanopore concomitantly as an electrical DNA sensor, and as an electrode for controlling the DNA translocation dynamics.

Biography:

Dr. Slaven GarajDr. Slaven Garaj is research associate at Harvard University where he works in the field of nanopores and nanosensors, with the main goal of developing a next-generation, inexpensive DNA sequencing scheme. He has authored more than 30 original and review scientific articles; and invented 7 patents/patents pending, most of which are under the licensing agreement. Prior to joining Harvard, Dr. Garaj earned his PhD in the field of condensed matter physics at Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Lausanne (EPFL) under the direction of Prof. Laszlo Forro, where he investigated correlation driven metal-insulator transitions in organic superconductors. His research interests include single-molecule biosensors; nano-electronics; nano-fluidics and synthetic nanopores; and electrical and structural properties of novel 2D layered materials.